GOOD

In Major First, Americans Will Drink More Water Than Soda In 2016, But Are We Healthier?

We’re heading in the right track

Source: Creative Commons

For years now, you’ve been hearing it from the CDC, public schools, and First Lady Michelle Obama: drink less soda. For the first time, it appears Americans are listening to that advice. Market research firm Euromonitor crunched the numbers and found that Americans are projected to buy more water than soda in 2016, at an average of 27.4 and 26.2 gallons, respectively.


According to ABC News, Americans have been inching their way toward a healthier lifestyle for some time now. Last year, for instance, U.S. consumers bought only a third of a gallon more soda than water. That’s a huge difference when you consider people were buying 1.9 gallons more soda than water per person in 2014.

Researchers haven’t agreed on what factor could be driving this trend, though it’s likely a combination of things. Bloomberg News reports increasing bouts of tap water contamination (ex. Flint, Michigan) have scared people into stocking up on bottled water. Chris Hogan, a vice president at the International Bottled Water Association, points to more complicated trends, telling ABC News that high-profile contamination cases "may play a role in some people’s concerns more recently, but this is an ongoing shift that’s been in the works for several years.”

But does that necessarily mean we’re getting healthier as a nation? When digesting these facts, it’s important to remember that bottled water as a consumer product is a pretty recent addition to supermarket shelves. According to NPR, Perrier hit the market in 1977, but the water we drink today out of perfectly clear, lightweight bottles didn’t take off until the early ‘90s.

Americans might be buying more water, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they’re drinking it; and landfills accumulating more plastic is certainly not healthy for the environment when we could be drinking high-quality, practically free water straight from the tap. On top of that, CNBC recently reported that American obesity rates have hit an all-time high, with nearly 40 percent of U.S. citizens battling the bulge.

So, while we may not be healthier just because we’re buying slightly more water than soda, the good news is that trends show we’re becoming more conscious of our health as a whole.

Articles
Screenshot via Sweden.se/Twitter (left) Wikimedia Commons (right)

Greta Thunberg has been dubbed the "Joan of Arc of climate change" for good reason. The 16-year-old activist embodies the courage and conviction of the unlikely underdog heroine, as well as the seemingly innate ability to lead a movement.

Thunberg has dedicated her young life to waking up the world to the climate crisis we face and cutting the crap that gets in the way of fixing it. Her speeches are a unique blend of calm rationality and no-holds-barred bluntness. She speaks truth to power, dispassionately and unflinchingly, and it is glorious.

Keep Reading Show less
The Planet
Ottawa Humane Society / Flickr

The Trump Administration won't be remembered for being kind to animals.

In 2018, it launched a new effort to reinstate cruel hunting practices in Alaska that had been outlawed under Obama. Hunters will be able to shoot hibernating bear cubs, murder wolf and coyote cubs while in their dens, and use dogs to hunt black bears.

Efforts to end animal cruelty by the USDA have been curtailed as well. In 2016, under the Obama Administration, the USDA issued 4,944 animal welfare citations, in two years the numbers dropped to just 1,716.

Keep Reading Show less
Science

The disappearance of 40-year-old mortgage broker William Earl Moldt remained a mystery for 22 years because the technology used to find him hadn't been developed yet.

Moldt was reported missing on November 8, 1997. He had left a nightclub around 11 p.m. where he had been drinking. He wasn't known as a heavy drinker and witnesses at the bar said he didn't seem intoxicated when he left.

Keep Reading Show less
Communities
via Real Time with Bill Maher / YouTube and The Late Late Show with James Corden / YouTube

A controversial editorial on America's obesity epidemic and healthcare by comedian Bill Maher on his HBO show "Real Time" inspired a thoughtful, and funny, response by James Cordon. It also made for a great debate about healthcare that Americans are avoiding.

At the end of the September 6th episode of "Real Time, " Maher turned to the camera for his usual editorial and discussed how obesity is a huge part of the healthcare debate that no one is having.

"At Next Thursday's debate, one of the candidates has to say, 'The problem with our healthcare system is Americans eat shit and too much of it.' All the candidates will mention their health plans but no one will bring up the key factor: the citizens don't lift a finger to help," Maher said sternly.

Keep Reading Show less
Politics
via Gage Skidmore

The common stereotypes about liberals and conservatives are that liberals are bleeding hearts and conservatives are cold-hearted.

It makes sense, conservatives want limited government and to cut social programs that help the more vulnerable members of society. Whereas liberals don't mind paying a few more dollars in taxes to help the unfortunate.

A recent study out of Belgium scientifically supports the notion that people who scored lower on emotional ability tests tend to have right-wing and racist views.

Keep Reading Show less
Politics